Athletic apparel company Nike announced they will no longer be pushing out a new patriotic sneaker after complaints from former NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick.
The shoe, the Air Max 1 Quick Strike Fourth of July, was set to be released for Independence Day and adorns an American flag on its heel.
The show is too offensive, Kaepernick reportedly told the company, calling for its removal.
“Kaepernick told the company it shouldn’t sell a shoe with a symbol that he and others consider offensive because the flag marked an era when slavery existed in the United States,” the Washington Examiner reports.
— Ted Cruz (@tedcruz) July 2, 2019
And, “The Betsy Ross American flag is the nickname for the design of 13 stars that represents the 13 colonies arranged in a circle.”
The Wall Street Journal, citing “people familiar with the matter,” reports: “Colin Kaepernick told the company it shouldn’t sell a shoe with a symbol that he and others consider offensive.”
Nike is yanking a sneaker featuring the "Betsy Ross flag" after Colin Kaepernick said he and others consider the symbol to be offensive https://t.co/eKVtPM6oTA
— The Wall Street Journal (@WSJ) July 1, 2019
The Washington Examiner reports a Nike spokesperson said: “Nike has chosen not to release the Air Max 1 Quick Strike Fourth of July as it featured the old version of the American flag.”
Looks like the “Fourth of July” Air Max 1 are getting pulled pic.twitter.com/UKLd4MvH8a
— J23 iPhone App (@J23app) June 25, 2019
From the New York Post:
Kaepernick reached out to the company after images of the sneaker bearing the Betsy Ross flag were posted online, the Journal said.
The former NFL quarterback said the image was offensive because of its connection to slavery.
The design was created in the 1770s and represents the 13 original colonies, according to the Smithsonian.
Twitchy reports Kaepernick’s decision is not being well received.
Colin Kaepernick succeeds in getting Nike to pull a sneaker featuring an early American flag https://t.co/Hn4xBBrqj2
— Twitchy Team (@TwitchyTeam) July 2, 2019
The Washington Examiner adds:
Kaepernick is sponsored by Nike, which featured him in an ad campaign that told people, “Believe in something. Even if it means sacrificing everything,” referencing his protests of the national anthem when he was with the San Francisco 49ers. The protests were to bring attention to police brutality and issues that minorities face.
He then became a free agent after the 2016 season and has not been signed by another team since. Kaepernick and other players filed collusion grievances against the NFL, claiming the owners had blacklisted them because of their protests. The league settled with them for under $10 million.